, Volume 22, Issue 1, pp 1-14

Activity patterns of a troop of Japanese monkeys (Macaca fuscata yakui) on Yakushima Island, Japan

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Abstract

Activity patterns of Japanese monkeys (Macaca fuscata) were observed for 240 hr from August to December 1976 on the western slope of Mt. Kuniwari, Yakushima Island, Japan. Activity patterns and the time budget of a habituated wild troop which consisted of 47 animals in August 1976, were studied quantitatively by using the scan-sampling method at 15-min intervals. Six thousand seven hundred and six animals were recorded in 959 scans during the study period and the mean number of animals seen per scan was 7.0. The time budget established for different categories of activity was as follows: inactive—20.9%; moving—22.8%; feeding—23.5%; social grooming—27.9%; self-grooming—1.2%; and other activities—3.7%. Adult males spent less time in feeding and more time in resting or being inactive than females or juveniles. The daily activity patterns were highly variable with respect to time. Intraspecific variations were examined between troops in several regions of Japan and it was noted that the percentages of time devoted to feeding were similar in all areas.

Inter-species variations in the activity budgets of several species of primates were also examined. The percentage of time spent in social grooming by Japanese monkeys is exceptionally high compared to that recorded in other species.